There seems to still be some uncertainty on when a visa application should be lodged as a renewal and when to lodge as a change of conditions / status application. Below is a brief overview when these processes apply -
If you are in possession of a South African visa and nothing in your circumstances changed, you must simply apply for a renewal of the same visa. Example - you are in possession of a general work visa with the same employer and occupation.
Upon renewal of your visa, only a South African police clearance will be required. The South African police clearance must be applied for at the VFS office on the day of submission and you will be required to pay a fee of R185 per clearance. In addition to the updated legal documents required, you are obliged to obtain a new medical certificate and radiological report as these reports may not be older than six (6) months on day of submission.
Change of Conditions / Status:
If you are in possession of a South African visa and your circumstances have changed or you need to apply for a different visa, this is considered a change of conditions / status application. Example One - if you are in possession of a critical skills work visa with company X as your employer and receive an offer of employment from company Y, you will be required to change to a new critical skills work visa to reflect company Y as your new employer. Yes, even if the visa type remains the same, there are still changed circumstances.
Example Two - if you are in possession of a Relative's visa and you wish to apply for a Section 11 (6) visa which is a spousal visa with authorization to conduct an activity, you will be required to change conditions / status.
The change of conditions application requires a new police clearance from every country where you resided for twelve (12) months and longer since your eighteenth birthday, even if you have not resided there for many years. We understand it is quite annoying to obtain police clearances and therefore we recommend working on a good lead time to complete this process.
Lastly, each application submitted at a South African mission abroad will always be considered a brand-new application and therefore all new police clearances must be submitted with your visa application. This includes a second or third application for the same long-term visa type.
Should you require any further information about these processes, you may reach out to us via our Contact Form on www.movingsouthimmigration.com. Alternatively, we may be contacted on +2773 5357 534 or email@example.com